This is an excerpt from EERE Network News, a weekly electronic newsletter.

October 31, 2007

Dutch Nuon Team Wins the Australian Solar Car Race

Photo of a nearly flat, rectangular car covered with solar cells, surrounded by people spraying champagne. The car has a small hump on top for the driver's head and oval stumps underneath each side to enclose its wheels.

Just like in the World Series, the Nuna4 was showered with champagne after its first-place finish.
Credit: Panasonic World Solar Challenge

The Nuna4 solar car from the Dutch Nuon Solar Team was declared the overall winner of the Panasonic World Solar Challenge on the night of October 28th. After bisecting the Australian continent on the 1,870-mile race to its southern shore, the team arrived in Adelaide late in the afternoon on Thursday, October 25th, making it the first team to complete the course and the only team to reach Adelaide on Thursday. The team completed the race in only 33 hours, for an average speed of about 56 miles per hour. The Umicore Solar Team from Belgium finished in second place more than an hour and a half later. The Ashiya University Solar Car Project won the less-restrictive Adventure Class with its TIGA solar car, which finished the course in just over 32 hours, with an average speed of about 58 miles per hour. See the Panasonic World Solar Challenge press releases and the Nuon Solar Team blog.

Among the U.S. entries, the University of Michigan Solar Car Team recovered from its crash in the qualifying race to finish in seventh place in the Challenge Class with an average speed of 41.5 miles per hour. Unfortunately, the Stanford Solar Car Project failed to complete the race after crashing its "Equinox" solar car. The car flipped over a concrete barrier after blowing out a tire. Miraculously, the driver emerged relatively unscathed but somewhat sore from the impact. The high school team from Houston, Mississippi, also failed to complete the race. See the blogs from the University of Michigan Solar Car Team and the Stanford Solar Car Project.